In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the company Central Klaipėda Terminal (CKT) is working to improve the quality of the services provided. A modern ozonation system in the passenger service and administrative building is about to be completed – by investing in this advanced technology, the company aims to ensure an improved level of cleaning and disinfection of the premises.
Developing a new generation of services
As Karolis Grigalauskas, the CEO of the CKT, noticed, COVID-19 has affected the travel industry all over the world, and the ferry lines connecting our domestic and foreign ports are no exception. It is estimated that this year the CKT will serve about 250 thousand passengers, which is about 30% less than in 2019. This recent extraordinary situation inevitably adjusted the company’s operations as well.
“At the onset of the pandemic, the terminal had to provide additional hygiene, disinfection and distance information to ferry passengers and staff, but the terminal’s modern infrastructure is used not only by travellers but also by customers renting office spaces, including companies such as MSC, DFDS Seaways, Hoeg LNG, Klaipėdos Nafta and others,” says the CEO of the CKT. “Especially recently, with the dramatic increase in the number of coronavirus cases in the country, we need to respond to the situation and look for innovative solutions by developing a new generation of services. We have chosen an efficient indoor disinfection system based on the effects of ozone.”
A smart ozonation system installed in the CKT passenger service and administrative building will be able to clean and disinfect about 1 thousand square meters of common areas. “Our customers will be able to feel safer, as this will reduce the risk of spreading viruses, bacteria and fungi, as well as prevent the spread of unpleasant odours,” explains K. Grigalauskas.
Disinfecting not only the premises
According to the head of the CKT, the project is currently in the final stage of implementation: the main units have already been delivered, only the installation works remain, which should be completed soon.
“The system will operate on the ground floor and the first floor of the passenger service and administrative building, in public spaces. The systems will be activated and the premises will be cleaned at night when the terminal is closed and there are no people in the disinfected premises. Before opening the building, the disinfected premises will be ventilated by means of a recuperation system. In addition, we will have a mobile portable ozone device for disinfecting the area of up to 100 square meters. It will be available to our customers and tenants, for example, in case of urgent need to disinfect not only the premises, but also buses or cars,” says K. Grigalauskas.
Today, due to its unique effects, ozone (O₃) is widely used not only in science and medicine. Ozonation systems have become a popular means of air and water purification, removal of unwanted odours both in industry and in various administrative and commercial facilities – from supermarkets to airports.
This technology has been increasingly used worldwide for over a decade now. Ozonation systems in particular have proved successful in combating SARS-type viruses, so they remain no less relevant today, in the face of coronavirus.
Ensuring a smart process
As it is popularly explained by scientists, lower concentrations of ozone penetrate the envelope of the virus and damage the genetic information in the DNA, while higher concentrations chemically destroy the envelope and destroy the DNA. Ozone not only breaks down the cell walls of microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi, moulds), but also paralyses the respiratory system of insects and small rodents.
As plant cells are larger than microorganisms, have a multi-layered wall structure, and are adapted to short-term and low concentrations of ozone, they do not suffer from treatment. Ozone does not claim to be a panacea, but experts acknowledge that its potential is still underused – the wider use of ozone for water, air purification, disinfection of raw materials and equipment is often held back by a lack of detailed information or myths about the alleged dangers of ozone. Modern solutions of ozone generation are provided by automated smart systems operating in accordance with mandatory safety and environmental standards.